Life and Style
This is called the Koru. It is a Maori name given to their unfurling fern which symbolizes new life, new beginning in harmony with nature. It is an integral symbol in Maori carving and tattoos. It is New Zealand's symbol and native plant. It is also the logo for Air New Zealand.
I bought a carved Koru necklace to always remind my wonderful experience in New Zealand.
Other carvings I purchased includes Eternity, Double Eternity and Hei Matau (the fish hook). They say travellers should wear the fish-hook whenever flying overseas. It is said to provide goodluck and safety over water elements. It represents a great respect for the sea. I know I will be wearing my fishhook flying back to the States!
Here's a link to Maori Carvings and their meaning.
On our drive back to Auckland from Rotorua - we stopped into a small town called Matamata, NZ. This little town has renamed themselves as Hobbiton . This was the town where they filmed the Lord of the Rings Trilogy. I was told that most of the movie was filmed in the South Island, but it was in Matamata where they filmed the home of Frodo and Sam.
About a 1 hour drive northwest of Auckland, we came to see Muriwai Beach by the Tasman Sea. Here, we see a massive nesting colony of Takapu (or Gannets). A solitude rock formation on the water is their home. These birds endure strong winds and rough waves - but fish is plentiful.
Kia Ora! The Swirl is spending 1.5 weeks in the City of Sails - Auckland, NZ. New Zealand has a population of only 4 million - making it one of the world's least crowded countries. Why did we chose to tour NZ? Well - the dollar is not as weak as in Europe, there is no political upheaval and right now, we just didn't want to work too hard trying to acclimate to a new language.
The people of NZ are warm and friendly. They can be referred to as the Kiwis (not the fruit, but a flightless bird with a long beak which is a size of a domestic hen).
big gay parade
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